I’m wrapping up work on a short film Sati Shaves Her Head, produced by Amar and Tejal Shah. It’s an adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Bernice Bobs Her Hair, which was a bit of a career-maker for the author, being his first short story to land his name on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post.
It’s also the original Mean Girls – wealthy college-aged women competing for boys and being alternately friendly and nasty to each other. Bernice is the outsider who learns to be cool. Sati Shaves her Head transplants the story to Beverly Hills and gives it a South Asian slant:
“Sati, a girl from a small Indian town, goes to California to visit her cousin Nikki for the summer. Nikki feels her fobby cousin is a drag on her social life…” (more)
Point your iPad here to read the Fitzgerald original. A quick read, surprisingly Gossip Girl-like.
The film comes in just under 30 minutes, and there is a ton of music, 18 separate cues. We’re licensing tracks for party scenes (once that is set I will post the bands and their songs).
For the original music, I’ve created a score combining Indian and Western instruments. Since the story is set in Beverly Hills, the music sounds more American than Indian. Sarod and tabla are mixed with pitched percussion, guitars and mandolins, woodwinds and strings.
As you might guess from the title, Sati (played by Sonal Shah) goes through quite a transformation. The music needs to reflect this journey Sati is at turns awkward, hurt, confused, excited, jealous, humiliated, scarred, and winning. Not to mention the various hair styles. Hannah Simone is Sati’s cousin Nikki, and the relationship between them is something of a cold war. I can say this much: nobody ends up with the same hairstyle they start with.